Total Terminals International (TTI) container terminal on Pier T in the Port of Long Beach has started its overnight hours pilot programme to widen access amid the ongoing cargo surge.
For truckers with appointments during the 11.00 pm and 1.30 am period, the terminal will allow access whenever they arrive during that time.
TTI is opening gates during the third shift, from 3.00 am and 7.00 am, Monday to Thursday, for two-way, prearranged truck appointments to both drop off and pick up container in the same trip.
Known as dual transactions, the practice pairs transport of a truck-hauled empty container for export with a loaded import container, for maximum efficiency.
Visits are arranged in advance, with chassis equipment drawn from the region’s ‘pool’ so everything goes smoothly.
Port of Long Beach Executive Director Mario Cordero commented, “We are in the midst of an historic surge in cargo, and our terminal operators and other supply chain partners are giving their all to keep it all moving.
“We welcome this pilot project by TTI as a first step toward extending gates to 24/7 operations, and we encourage our cargo owners and trucking partners to give this innovative program a try.”
The pilot project meshes with the recently announced joint effort with the neighbouring Port of Los Angeles and the US Department of Transportation to extend terminal hours to improve freight movement and reduce delays at the San Pedro Bay port complex.
The pilot programme will be evaluated periodically by the terminal and adjusted as necessary. To assess the program’s effectiveness, the terminal will monitor gate utilization, dwell time of import containers, and truck driver productivity.
Bill Peratt, CEO of TTI, added, “If we can increase utilization of our late night gates, we can better serve the supply chain, and help speed cargo to market.
“By making it more convenient for truckers, we are optimistic that these steps can reduce the dwell time at our terminal.”